Goa Diocesan Synod working paper mentions the role of Small Christian Communities (SCC’s) in the renewal of Christian Life and in this respect, it is pertinent to note that unlike associations, social action groups, prayer groups or sects, SCC’s are characterised by all the four following essential elements:
(a) Neighbourhood relations
(b) Word of God
(c) Action
(d) Universal Catholic Church
Now the purpose of having SCC’s in the parishes is reflected in the following activities
Fellowship: Wherein we strive to build a committed relationship of Christian love specially among neighbours
Faith formation: Through the word of God we come to know Jesus, experience Him and Strive to follow Him and thus we yearn to learn more about our faith.
Service: We learn that participation in the Holy Sacrifice of Mass is not complete unless we live this Mass in and around our homes and work places. We thus strive to make Jesus the centre of our lives and our renewal sensitises us to reach out to the needs of others and we become the salt of the earth and committed to loving our neighbour.
In our Aquem Parish area there are about seven SCC’s around five sectors and their influence on the Parish area community as a whole can be perceived in the light of four following essential elements characterize the SCC
(a) Neighbourhood relations: Sector wise people have come to know each other through SCC’s besides their neighbours more intimately .The concern towards one another and the spirit of forgiveness, although in the infancy stage, is picking up slowly.
(b) Word of God: There is an awareness to live in the light of the word of God and a renewal in the lives of most of those participating in SCC meetings and they have also begun taking an active part in organizing the Sunday Mass liturgy, Holy Hour, Way of the cross, Rosaries, etc.
(c) Action: Sector wise members of SCC now contribute more of their time, service and money for the Parish activities such as programmes organized for Christmas and other celebrations and work in the Chapel, the awareness and tendency to help others is gaining ground slowly and firmly.
(d) Universal Church: Faith formation, prayers and help in need obtained through SCC’s have brought Christians in the Parish more closer to the Catholic Church. Most of the SCC members have realized the value and hence the need to contribute more towards the church through their prayers for the Pope and the church leaders, citing and practice of Christian charity
Therefore the SCC’s in Aquem Parish area have surely influenced the renewal of Christian life and active participation in the Chapel activities and with the present measures taken and the encouragement given by our ever enthusiastic and dynamic Chaplain Fr. James in this respect, the SCC will surely be a success in building a Kingdom of God in our Aquem Parish area.